[ visual art ]
Even after five decades and five seasons of Mad Men, American desire remains the same — at least if advertising has anything to say about it. Collage artist Carolyn Giordano's new exhibit extracts the bold colors and fonts of '50s and '70s print culture — newspapers, cookbooks, magazines — and repastes them into contexts that hold telling clues about our culture (did you know that back then, Miss America was giving bust-line secrets and horse-race betting tips?). Giordano takes up serious subjects, too, including a series that collages colorful old-school cigarette ads and contemporary images of bleach products. Sobering snippets aside, her collages always begin and end with a feeling of enchantment. "I am drawn to the beautiful promises colorful advertisements hold," says Giordano. "The photos and fonts are always inviting me to a party."
Opening reception Sat., Feb. 12, 9 p.m., free, through March 12, Ugly American Bar and Restaurant, 1100 S. Front St., 215-336-1100, uglyamericanphilly.com.